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Childhood Epstein-Barr Virus infection and subsequent risk of psychotic experiences in adolescence: A population-based prospective serological study

Khandaker, Golam M., Stochl, Jan, Zammit, Stanley, Lewis, Glyn and Jones, Peter B. 2014. Childhood Epstein-Barr Virus infection and subsequent risk of psychotic experiences in adolescence: A population-based prospective serological study. Schizophrenia Research 158 (1-3) , pp. 19-24. 10.1016/j.schres.2014.05.019

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Several studies suggest a link between early-life infection and adult schizophrenia. Cross-sectional studies have reported: (1) increased prevalence of Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV), a member of the Herpesviridae family in schizophrenia; (2) a possible role of Herpes simplex virus in cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia and healthy controls. We report a longitudinal serological study of early-life EBV infection, childhood IQ, and subsequent risk of psychotic experiences (PE) in adolescence. METHODS: Serum antibodies to EBV (anti-VCA IgG) were measured in 530 participants from the ALSPAC cohort at age 4 years. Assessments for IQ at age 9 and PE at age 13 were attended by 401 and 366 of these individuals, respectively. Logistic regression calculated odds ratio (OR) for PE in EBV-exposed, compared with unexposed group. Mean IQ scores were compared between these groups; effect of IQ on the EBV-PE association was examined. Potential confounders included age, gender, ethnicity, social class, household crowding, and concurrent depression and anxiety. RESULTS: About 25% of the sample was exposed to EBV at age 4. EBV exposure was associated with subsequent risk of definite PE in adolescence; OR 5.37 (95% CI 1.71-16.87), which remained significant after confounding adjustment. EBV-exposed individuals compared with unexposed performed worse on all IQ measures; mean difference in full-scale IQ 4.15 (95% CI 0.44-7.87); however, this was explained by socio-demographic differences. The EBV-PE association was not explained by IQ. CONCLUSIONS: Early-life exposure to EBV is associated with PE in adolescence, consistent with a role of infection/immune dysfunction in the aetiology of psychosis.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics
Medicine
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
R Medicine > RJ Pediatrics > RJ101 Child Health. Child health services
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 0920-9964
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 08:15
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/74871

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